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Excursions Podcast

Weekly audio essays on the history of libertarian ideas. Written by George H. Smith and narrated by James Foster.

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Excursions

Social Laws, Part 10

featuring George H. Smith on May 3, 2017

George H. Smith explores Emile Durkheim’s major objections to Herbert Spencer’s theory of a free society based on voluntary contracts.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 9

featuring George H. Smith on Apr 26, 2017

George H. Smith explores some features of social holism, as explained and defended by Emile Durkheim.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 8

featuring George H. Smith on Apr 19, 2017

George H. Smith explores the historical and theoretical roots of methodological individualism and subjectivism.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 7

featuring George H. Smith on Apr 12, 2017

George H. Smith discusses some controversial features of praxeology, as defended by Ludwig von Mises. 

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 6

featuring George H. Smith on Apr 5, 2017

George H. Smith explains methodological individualism and its implications for the existence of institutions and other social phenomena.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 5

featuring George H. Smith on Mar 29, 2017

George H. Smith discusses the value of sociology and some misconceptions of methodological individualism.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 4

featuring George H. Smith on Mar 22, 2017

George H. Smith explains Herbert Spencer’s views of the scientific status of sociology, the nature of social laws, and the practical value of social science.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 3

featuring George H. Smith on Mar 15, 2017

George H. Smith explores the controversy over whether sociology qualifies as an authentic science.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 2

featuring George H. Smith on Mar 8, 2017

George H. Smith explains how the methodological monism of modern positivism differs from classical empiricism.

Excursions

Social Laws, Part 1

featuring George H. Smith on Mar 1, 2017

George H. Smith explains methodological subjectivism and how it applies to the study of human action.

Excursions

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 10

featuring George H. Smith on Feb 15, 2017

George H. Smith explains Paine’s views on paper money, price controls, self-interest, and exploitative governments.

Excursions

Independence Day: What is There to Celebrate?

featuring George H. Smith on Feb 8, 2017

The ideal of individual freedom is more than a will-o’-the-wisp. It was widely appreciated in the past and so may become widely appreciated in the future.

Excursions

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 9

featuring George H. Smith on Feb 1, 2017

George H. Smith explains some of Thomas Paine’s ideas about the nature of a republic and the benefits of a representative form of government.

Excursions

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 8

featuring George H. Smith on Jan 25, 2017

George H. Smith explains Edmund Burke’s argument against majority rule and a constitution based on the consent of the governed.

Excursions

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 7

featuring George H. Smith on Jan 18, 2017

George H. Smith explains Thomas Paine’s constitutional theory and why Paine believed that Britain had no constitution.

Excursions

Thomas Paine Versus Edmund Burke, Part 6

featuring George H. Smith on Jan 11, 2017

How the libertarian ideas of Richard Price motivated Burke to write Reflections on the Revolution in France, and how Paine dealt with the controversy.